Training Plans

Training Plans for use in

If you aren’t quite ready to make the plunge for professional coaching, a professionally-prepared training plan can be a good alternative. Winkler Coaching offers multiple training plans through

Haute Route Rockies 2018

This training plan will get you ready to tackle the Haute Route Rockies. This 7-day event features high elevation and plenty of climbing in beautiful Colorado. Throw in a fair amount of dirt/gravel rural roads and you have a truly unique riding experience.

This plan is appropriate for any level of cyclist who has had a mostly consistent 7-12hrs/week training during 2018 (all activities). You can execute most of the plan with only a heart rate monitor, but several workouts will be more effective with a power meter. The plan begins with field tests to establish your fitness benchmarks. These tests will allow you to set up reasonable training zones and guide the intensity of workouts throughout the plan.

You can prepare for the Haute Route Rockies without having access to mountains, you just have to commit to “climbing-type” efforts. In reality, your body and working muscles don’t know whether you are climbing or not, it’s all effort level.

That said, high elevation IS an unavoidable challenge of this event. Most of this event will be ridden on roads above 7000ft/2000m. You can manage the event without any specific acclimatization, but your output will have to be adjusted accordingly. While studies are not in complete agreement on the optimal acclimatization process, here’s 2 strategies: 1) spend the week before the event at 6000ft/1800m to allow you body to make most of the adjustments, or 2) spend 90+ minutes training at 7000ft/2000m 5-6 days per week for 3-4 weeks immediately preceding the event.

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7-Week Preseason Training Plan (ROAD)

This plan is designed for the USA Cycling racer who focusing primarily on the Road Season March – September. This a plan to transition you from the off-season to the early competition period. Ideally you would begin this plan in early January and complete it by early March. Many locales in the U.S. start racing in March and important events will begin to appear on the calendar. You will not be peaking at the end of this block, but you will be ready to race. After this block you should employ an “in-season” block that balances volume and intensity with your weekend racing schedule.

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Race-Ready in 8-weeks Training Plan (ROAD)

You should have some base miles before beginning this plan. Ideally, you’ve been on the bike 8+ hours per week for at least 8 weeks. You can start this plan at any time during the season. You may notice more or less improvement depending on what you have done in the few months prior to starting this plan. Nonetheless, this plan will stress and improve all the physiological systems needed for success in road racing. This is a generalized program that is applicable to all forms of road racing: time trials, criteriums, and road races. The plan also assumes that you are fresh and ready to start hard training. This is best achieved with a week off or easy week before you start the plan. This plan requires 10-16hrs per week with most of the longer rides on the weekend. It is suitable for a rider with a normal work schedule, but may require time on the trainer during the week due to limited daylight. This plan is not limited to any particular level of rider. The time commitment, however, may be a limiter and make it more appropriate for experienced or committed racers. Nonetheless, if this time commitment doesn’t represent a large increase over your previous training volume, it may work for you. Finally, if you find yourself deeply fatigued at any point, you can simply take a few easy or rest days and then pick it back up.

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2-week Overload and Peak Training Plan (MTB/ROAD)

This is a “mini-peaking” block to be used during the season. If a heavy racing schedule prevents a lengthy, gradual build followed by a lengthy taper, this plan has been shown scientifically to be just as effective. The basic approach is a 7-day overload, followed by a 5-day step taper. Fatigue should peak at the end of the load period and freshness should improve each day during the taper. You should flush nearly all residual fatigue by the end of the taper. Legs should feel “VERY GOOD” by end of taper. Some individual experimentation may be appropriate if you find you need additional overload or additional recovery. The 7-day overload must actually be an overload. At the very least, this should be more high intensity than your typical week. Overall time on the bike may be slightly reduced. From a TSS perspective, the overload week should be one of your higher weekly TSS values. Additional TSS (up to 400) can be added by extending rides to 1:30 with additional Zone 2 time. This plan is appropriate for ROAD or MTB.

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8-week Collegiate MTB Racing Plan (MTB)

Collegiate MTB racing starts in the fall with the school year and culminates with the National Championships in October. In 2017, the Nationals are in Missoula, Montana. This plan is 8 weeks long and is designed to end with your Conference Championships or National Championships (mid to late October). The training volume is 10-12 hours per week including both on and off-the-bike time. Although Gravity riders could certainly do this plan, it is intended for riders competing in Endurance events (XC & STXC).

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